Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL, Set for December 2016 Release in the Philippines

The rumors are true.

There's indeed a 5.5-inch version of the best-selling Asus ZenFone 3 Max and it's arriving in the Philippines soon.

How soon is soon, you ask?

Well, I don't know the exact date yet but according to our very trusted source it should be sometime this Yuletide Season or - to be specific - within the second week of December 2016.

Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL

The other day, our friends from Asus Philippines sent me Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL unit to play with and - as many would expect - I instantly fell in love with it.

Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL

Starting from its design all the way to its internal specifications, this model - I'm convinced - is a really strong midrange release.

Not to mention, it has one of the features I deem most important in today's smartphones: A big 4,100 mAh battery providing extended uptime and giving users peace of mind when traveling or working away from an electrical outlet.

Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL

Looks-wise, ZC553KL - you can say - is simply a larger version of the 5.2-inch Asus ZenFone 3 Max, even having the exact same unibody anodized aluminum shell. This only means that this release is just as sleek and svelte.

If you ask me, I think this handset can certainly stand shoulder to shoulder with the best-looking smartphones of 2016 and not feel a bit shy. Frankly, it's quite a looker.

Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL

The two ZenFone 3 Max models may have the same design identity but this 5.5-inch version is notably superior in terms of screen resolution, imaging capabilities, and internal hardware.

Dual SIM and 4G-enabled ZC553KL sports a 5.5-inch Full HD IPS display, a 16 MegaPixel PixelMaster 3.0 camera (with 1/3" sensor size, f/2.0 aperture, ultra-fast 0.03s instant focus, Tri-Tech autofocus, Dual Tone LED flash, and up to 32 second exposure support like Asus ZenFone 3 ZE552KL), and an 8 MegaPixel selfie cam in front (with f/2.2 aperture, 84˚ field of view, and Beautification Mode).

Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL

Under the hood, the Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL unit that I have runs its Zen-UI-skinned Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS with a 64-Bit Octa Core Snapdragon 430 MSM8937 processor, has 3GB of RAM, and comes with 32GB of internal storage (22.5GB user available) that can easily be augmented using the secondary hybrid nanoSIM slot that likewise supports microSD card.

In comparison, ZC520TL only has a 5.2-inch HD IPS display, a 13 MegaPixel autofocus camera with f/2.2 aperture and single-bulb LED flash, 5MP f/2.0 selfie cam in front, and a 64-Bit Quad Core MediaTek MT6737T chipset.

Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL

Another Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch feature that I like is the Fingerprint Scanner at the back, right below the camera module. This nifty sensor provides an added layer of privacy protection and allows the user to unlock the device with but a touch of a finger.

Asus ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL
My one gripe with this model is that its battery is not quite as big as the 5,000 mAh pack of the first Asus ZenFone Max model released in January 2016, which I still use as one of my daily drivers. Then again, I'm hoping that the more energy efficient processor and operating system of this refresh would be enough to compensate for the 900 mAh difference in capacity to give me the same handset uptime that I'm used to getting from my older Max.

Asus Philippines is set to announce the official SRP of its much awaited ZenFone 3 Max 5.5-inch ZC553KL within the next few days. So if you're a big Asus fan and you're currently on the lookout for a big-battery Android phablet, make sure you stay tuned for updates.

ZC553KL is available in four luscious color exuding elegance and corporate sophistication, namely, Sand Gold, Titanium Gray, Rose Pink, and - what I have here - Glacier Silver.

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